Posted: 12/07/2015

Vitamin and Mineral Deficiencies that Cause Fatigue

Vitamins_and_minerals

Sleeping the recommended 7-8 hours and eating a well-balanced diet might not be enough to keep you energetic throughout the day. If you are experiencing fatigue and are currently not taking any prescription medications, a vitamin and mineral deficiency might be to blame. If left untreated, the body’s reaction to such deficiencies can cause serious problems like anemia, muscle deterioration, and hypertension.

The chronic fatigue symptoms patients experience depend on the type of vitamin and mineral deficiency, but may include a weakened immune system, poor concentration, weakness and tiredness, slow social or mental development in children, diarrhea, loss of appetite, muscle cramping, nausea and vomiting, constipation, bloating, or abdominal pain. Among some of the symptoms that indicate vitamin and nutrient deficiency the most include prolonged fatigue, weakness or concentration.

The best way to determine if you have a vitamin and mineral deficiency is to perform blood tests that can detect gluten, mineral, iron, calcium and other nutrient deficiencies in the body. This blood test can be administered at a doctor’s office, and can indicate if the body is lacking vital vitamins and nutrients that help the body fight off infections and maintain healthy body functions. Based on your test results, your doctor can recommend foods or supplement that can help elevate low levels of vitamins and nutrients in the body to increase energy levels and treat fatigue symptoms.

Vital Vitamins & Nutrients in the Human Body

Iron
Nearly 70% of iron present in the body can be found in the red blood cells’ hemoglobin and myoglobin. The primary function of hemoglobin in the body is to transfer oxygen from the longs to vital tissues that make up body organs, and myoglobin transfers oxygen to muscles tissues. When there is a significant iron deficiency present in the body, a patient may develop anemia which manifests into symptoms like prolonged chronic fatigue, shortness of breath, lightheadedness, dizziness, or a fast heartbeat.

Some of the ways to supplement iron deficiency include incorporating iron-rich food likes eggs, red meat, salmon, spinach, kale, rice and beans. If your blood test results indicate that your body is lacking iron, a doctor will recommend taking over the counter iron supplements to increase red blood cell production.

Vitamin B12
The primary function of Vitamin B12 is to help the body’s nervous system and blood cells function optimally, and to make the body produce DNA. A deficiency in vitamin B12 can lead to anemia, muscle weakness, hypertension, vision problems, dementia, psychosis, and mood disturbances.

Among some of the recommended ways to increase Vitamin B12 are oral supplements and foods like beef liver, shellfish, chicken, beef, milk and other dairy products. If blood tests determines a deficiency in Vitamin B12, your doctor may administer shots of Vitamin B12 every couple of months to boost energy levels and increase metabolic function.

Vitamin D
The body uses Vitamin D to absorb calcium and promote bone and muscle tissue growth. The most common way the body can absorb Vitamin D is through directly sunlight, but some individuals might not be getting enough of this vitamin that can cause muscle and joint pain, and can manifest in symptoms like excessive sweating, broken bones, chronic pain, and fatigue.

Patients who have a Vitamin D deficiency can increase levels by consuming fish like tuna or salmon, dairy products, orange juice, and some fortified breakfast cereals. If your test results indicate a Vitamin D deficiency, your doctor can recommend over the counter supplements to help the body absorb the adequate levels to prevent fatigue and excessive tiredness.

Magnesium
The primary functions of magnesium in the body are to regulate biochemical reactions in the body like muscle and nerve function, blood glucose control, and blood pressure regulation. When the body is deficient in magnesium, the body can experience symptoms like fatigue, anxiety, hyperactivity, insomnia, painful muscle spasms, muscle cramping, facial tics, and involuntary eye movements.

Increasing levels of magnesium present in the body can be achieved by consuming magnesium rich foods such as almonds, cashews, molasses, buckwheat, Brazil nuts, pecans, raw hazelnuts, and seaweed. If your blood tests determine you have a magnesium deficiency, a doctor can recommended over the counter supplements to combat fatigue through the day.

Potassium
Healthy levels of potassium in the body can help cells, tissues and organs function properly by providing essential electrolytes that conduct electricity throughout the body. A deficiency in potassium can cause fatigue, muscle weakness, abnormal heart rhythms, constipation, and body tingling, and numbness.

Some foods that can increase potassium levels in the body include, avocados, bananas, apricots, artichokes and bamboo shoots. If your blood tests determine a potassium deficiency, doctors will recommend potassium supplements to improve energy levels.

Folic Acid
The role of folic acid in the body is to promote proper brain functions, and it plays an important role in mental and emotional health. A deficiency in folic acid can cause anemia that make the body feel tired throughout the day. Among some of the symptoms patients with low folic acid experience include chronic fatigue, grey hair, mouth sores, tongue swelling, and growth problems.

Foods like leafy greens, Brussels sprouts, peas, citrus, bananas, melons, tomato juice, eggs, beans and legumes, mushrooms asparagus, poultry and shellfish. Doctors will recommend a supplement to increase folic acid if test results determine a sufficient deficiency. Women who are pregnant or plan to become pregnant benefit from taking folic acid because it crucial for normal fetal growth.

By HelpRx Staff Writer

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